The Wahkiakum County Eagle - Established as The Skamokawa Eagle in 1891

VFW post honors emergency responders


February 13, 2020

Courtesy photo.

Fire Chief Vernon Barton, left, and Bill Tawater, Wahkiakum VFW Post 5297 Commander.

Each year, the Veterans of Foreign Wars selects emergency medical technicians, law enforcement and firefighter personnel to receive VFW Public Servant Awards. Local VFW Posts submit a candidate for these awards to their State VFW Department Headquarters. The department then selects a single candidate for each of the three awards and submit those to VFW National Headquarters.

The VFW National Emergency Medical Technician Public Servant Citation applies to any individual, who actively gives emergency medical treatment, provides rescue service or civil disaster assistance as a member of any public or volunteer company organized to give emergency medical care, provide rescue and civil disaster assistance to our nation's citizens.

The VFW National Law Enforcement Public Servant Citation applies to any individual who serves in a municipal, county, state or federal unit tasked with enforcement of the laws pertaining to their area of responsibility. This award does not apply to individuals employed by private companies or security services.

The VFW National Firefighters Public Servant Citation applies to any individual who actively fights fires as a member of any public or volunteer company organized to fight fires and give assistance to our nation's citizens.

Candidates must have demonstrated recognition by their colleagues or those they serve; consistent excellence in the performance of their duties; and consistent dedication to their official responsibilities and skills within their profession.

Courtesy photo.

Bill Tawater, left, Wahkiakum VFW Post 5297 Commander and Billy Conrad.

For the first time, Wahkiakum VFW Post 5297, has selected members of our community for each category for 2019-2020. On Jan. 22, at the Wahkiakum County Courthouse Meeting Room, Deputy Sheriff Billy Conrad Jr. was presented with a plaque for the Law Enforcement Award. On February 6, at the Cathlamet Fire Hall, EMT/EMS Battalion Chief/RN Jodie Mason was presented with a plaque for the Emergency Medical Technician Award and Firefighter/Battalion Chief Chris Garstki for the Firefighter Award. Chris Garstki unfortunately was unable to attend the presentation due to his work as a WSDOT employee and working the KM slide. Fire Chief Vernon Barton accepted the award for Chris. All three post award packages have been sent to the Washington State VFW Department for consideration and hopefully on to the VFW National Headquarters.


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